The first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him.

— Niccolo Machiavelli

The most colossal Niccolo Machiavelli quotes that will be huge advantage for your personal development

The lion cannot protect himself from traps, and the fox cannot defend himself from wolves. One must therefore be a fox to recognize traps, and a lion to frighten wolves.


I desire to go to Hell and not to Heaven.

In the former I shall enjoy the company of popes, kings and princes, while in the latter are only beggars, monks and apostles


A sign of intelligence is an awareness of one's own ignorance.

Niccolo Machiavelli quote Everyone sees what you appear to be, few

Everyone sees what you appear to be, few experience what you really are.


Power is the pivot on which everything hinges.

He who has the power is always right; the weaker is always wrong.


You know better than I that in a Republic talent is always suspect.

A man attains an elevated position only when his mediocrity prevents him from being a threat to others. And for this reason a democracy is never governed by the most competent, but rather by those whose insignificance will not jeopardize anyone else's self-esteem.


Everyone sees what you appear to be, few experience what you really are.

Niccolo Machiavelli quote It is just as difficult and dangerous to

It is just as difficult and dangerous to try to free a people that wants to remain servile as it is to enslave a people that wants to remain free.


It is better to be feared than loved, if you cannot be both.


The more sand has escaped from the hourglass of our life, the clearer we should see through it.


If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared.


If you only notice human proceedings, you may observe that all who attain great power and riches, make use of either force or fraud; and what they have acquired either by deceit or violence, in order to conceal the disgraceful methods of attainment, they endeavor to sanctify with the false title of honest gains.


Whoever wishes to foresee the future must consult the past;

for human events ever resemble those of preceding times. This arises from the fact that they are produced by men who ever have been, and ever shall be, animated by the same passions, and thus they necessarily have the same results.


Men are of three different capacities: one understands intuitively;

another understands so far as it is explained; and a third understands neither of himself nor by explanation. The first is excellent, the second, commendable, and the third, altogether useless.


About Niccolo Machiavelli

Quotes 374 sayings
Nationality Italian
Profession Writer
Birthday October 16

Gold will not always get you good soldiers, but good soldiers can get you gold.


Men in general judge more from appearances than from reality.

All men have eyes, but few have the gift of penetration.


The ends justifies the means.


Men are so simple and so much inclined to obey immediate needs that a deceiver will never lack victims for his deceptions.


Always assume incompetence before looking for conspiracy.


Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth.

Develop the strength to do bold things, not to suffer.


There is nothing as likely to succeed as what the enemy believes you cannot attempt.


It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver.


One change always leaves the way open for the establishment of others.


Never was anything great achieved without danger.


Whosoever desires constant success must change his conduct with the times.


It is better to be adventurous than cautious, because fortune is a woman.


Where the willingness is great, the difficulties cannot be great.


He who wishes to be obeyed must know how to command.


When you disarm the people, you commence to offend them and show that you distrust them either through cowardice or lack of confidence, and both of these opinions generate hatred.


Hatred is gained as much by good works as by evil.


Wars begin when you will, but they do not end when you please.


There is simply no comparison between a man who is armed and one who is not.

It is simply unreasonable to expect that an armed man should obey one who is unarmed, or that an unarmed man should remain safe and secure when his servants are armed.


Men are so simple of mind, and so much dominated by their immediate needs, that a deceitful man will always find plenty who are ready to be deceived.


One who deceives will always find those who allow themselves to be deceived.


No enterprise is more likely to succeed than one concealed from the enemy until it is ripe for execution.


For the great majority of mankind are satisfied with appearances, as though they were realities, and are often more influenced by the things that seem than by those that are.


The unarmed man is not just defenseless - he is also contemptible.


A prince never lacks legitimate reasons to break his promise.


How we live is so different from how we ought to live that he who studies what ought to be done rather than what is done will learn the way to his downfall rather than to his preservation.


It is not titles that honor men, but men that honor titles.


There is no avoiding war; it can only be postponed to the advantage of others.


A prudent man... must behave like those archers who, if they are skillful, when the target seems too distant, know the capabilities of their bow and aim a good deal higher than their objective, not in order to shoot so high but so that by aiming high they can reach the target.


One must be a fox to recognize traps and a lion to frighten wolves


All courses of action are risky, so prudence is not in avoiding danger (it's impossible), but calculating risk and acting decisively. Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth. Develop the strength to do bold things, not the strength to suffer.


I'm not interested in preserving the status quo; I want to overthrow it.


Of mankind we may say in general they are fickle, hypocritical, and greedy of gain.


You must know, then, that there are two methods of fighting, the one by law, the other by force: the first method is that of men, the second of beasts; but as the first method is often insufficient, one must have recourse to the second.


the wise man should always follow the roads that have been trodden by the great, and imitate those who have most excelled, so that if he cannot reach their perfection, he may at least acquire something of its savour.


It is often found that modesty and humility not only do no good, but are positively hurtful, when they are shown to the arrogant who have taken up a prejudice against you, either from envy or from any other cause.


It is necessary that the prince should know how to color his nature well, and how to be a hypocrite and dissembler. For men are so simple, and yield so much to immediate necessity, that the deceiver will never lack dupes.


A son can bear with equanimity the loss of his father, but the loss of his inheritance may drive him to despair.